iowa stata fair

August 11 to August 21: Iowa State Fair

Get ready to experience the largest event in Iowa! The famous Iowa State Fair will be making its much-anticipated return to the fairgrounds in Des Moines from August 11 to August 21.

The annual parade, which begins at 6:15 p.m. in Downtown Des Moines on August 10, kicks off a full 10 days of live entertainment, amusement attractions and mouthwatering foods and beverages. It’s no wonder why the fair attracts visitors from around the world!

Many visitors’ favorite feature of the fair is obviously the one-of-a-kind food options. With nearly 200 food stands, there is something for everyone, with fan favorites including Barksdale’s buckets of chocolate chip cookies, teriyaki island noodles and peanut butter fluff cookie dough. And, of course, you can’t go wrong with anything that comes on a stick. Some creative yet classic dishes served via stick at Iowa State Fair are deep-fried pies and a variety of unique corn dogs.

Concerts are a major crowd pleaser at this summer celebration. Free entertainment is offered throughout the venue, with artists ranging from rock legends to country stars. Be sure to check out the exclusive lineup for the Grandstand Arena. Some headliners include Nelly (August 13), Demi Lovato (August 14), Kane Brown (August 18), Keith Urban (August 20) and many more! A hard-to-miss concert will surely be Carrie Underwood closing out Iowa State Fair as a grand finale on August 21.

Photo credit: Iowa State Fair

The live entertainment doesn’t end there. If you’re looking to be the star of the show, then you’re in luck because the Iowa State Fair celebrates its visitors as well. There are various contests open to kids and adults as well, ranging from cooking competitions to backgammon tournaments. Most prominent of all is The Bill Riley Talent Search Championship, where guests can check out all of the finalists before the winner is announced.

The Iowa State Fair is the perfect place to spend time with family and friends of all ages. Check out Thrill Ville if you’re ready to experience the Reichardt Family Giant Slide or more jaw-dropping rides in the Thrill Zone for those who like to scream. Animal lovers will be in heaven when they see the baby cows and piglets alongside other farm favorites. And at Elwell Family Park, spectators can watch ATV races and tractor pulls.

The fair’s admission starts at $14 per day for ages 12 and up; and $8 for children ages 6 to 11; and children under age 5 are admitted for free.

For more information on the Iowa State Fair, visit

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